Rating: 3.5 Stars
Published: September 2014
Genre: Adult Fiction / Thriller
“Or maybe it’s life that’s the infection: a feverish dream, a hallucination of feelings. Death is purification, a cleansing, a cure.”
“Parents teach us our very first lesson about love: that you sure as hell don’t get to choose it.”
This summer, I read Before I Fall and Panic. I loved Lauren’s writing even though I wasn’t a huge fan of Before I Fall. I couldn’t wait to read more from her, though I’m not sure if I want to read the Delirium Trilogy. When I found out she was releasing her first adult novel, I was ecstatic.
Rooms revolves around a house. The owner, Richard Walker just died. Luckily for the ghosts that lived that there, he didn’t die in the house, which would have meant more company for them. The two ghosts, Alice and Sandra, are soon joined in the house by the rest of the Walker clan who have arrived to clear out Richard’s things. Told in alternating points of view of Alice, Sandra, Caroline Walker, Richard’s ex-wife, and their kids, Minna and Trenton, Rooms lets you get to know every character a little bit at a time.
Each section of the novel is a different room of the house. It’s set up so each part pretty much takes place in that room. The idea is that the walls have ears/eyes in form of the resident ghosts. I like the concept. It’s a neat idea. The writing is great. It’s more of a study of the house. I still couldn’t really tell you if anything really happened. The novel goes through everything in the life of the house but nothing at the same time. It shows the possession the ghosts feel for the house and even sometimes the people inside of it.
I don’t particularly think that much actually happened in this book. The first half was well written, I liked the characters, I liked the different point of views but not much happened. Rooms is more so the story of the house. The ghosts are connected to the house. The family lives in the house. The ghosts are apart of the house, the walls, the rooms.
Sandra is a pretty great character. She has a sharp tongue is, in my opinion, one of the most interesting characters because of her personality is so strong. She is what kept me reading this book. I just loved her chapters because her personality was so sharp and different from the rest. Seriously, she has the best lines:
“My point is, I didn’t sit around sobbing about my problems and expecting everyone to feel sorry for me. I wanted out of Georgia, and so I got out of Georgia, and I didn’t wait for some man to saddle me with a ring and a lifetime of laundry to do it.”
Overall, I think it’s a good piece but you have work for it. There’s mystery in the characters and some of the events but it’s very drawn out. It takes until over halfway through the book for it to be truly compelling. Trenton is slowly figuring out the ghosts and interacts with someone outside of his family members. The characters slowly reveal to the reader who they are. There’s a disappearance. The ghosts, Alice especially, start to cause things to happen. But you have to wait for all this to happen. This isn’t a book that automatically starts with action. I’m okay with that, I just wish I knew that going into it.